In honor of Cyber Security Awareness month, here are a few tips to make you more aware of how scammers appeal to your emotions of fear or greed to get you to do what they want. Recognize them to avoid malware and having your identity or money stolen!
1. Microsoft Calling?
|ACTION: HANG UP! Never let a stranger into your computer! The scammers want to put malware on your computer and charge you lots of money to remove it.|
2. Call Microsoft Pop-up?
|ACTION: DO NOT CALL! The scammers want money to remove non-existent malware. To close the pop-up, do CTRL-ALT-DEL, open TASKMANAGER, select the browser, and click END TASK.|
3. FW: e-mail from friend with attachment?
|ACTION: DO NOT CLICK TO OPEN! Your friend did not create the attachment. Scammers deliver malware payloads to stolen e-mail addresses … and viral to your friends.|
4. E-mail with attached .ZIP file?
|ACTION: DO NOT CLICK TO OPEN! The scammer delivers a very serious malicious payload when the the file is opened.|
5. E-mail requests you to log-in to your account?
|ACTION: DO NOT LOG IN FROM ANY E-MAIL! Phishing e-mails from scammers are designed to steal your identity or your money.|
6. Different search page?
|ACTION: DO NOT SEARCH FROM AN UNKNOWN SEARCH PAGE! Scammers change search engines to send you to their malware infected websites.|
7. Request to pay to unlock your files?
|ACTION: TURN OFF YOUR COMPUTER. Do not use your computer; take it immediately to a computer professional at a computer repair shop. Hopefully, you previously backed up your personal files.|
Once you recognize how the scammers get into your computer, you will be empowered to avoid the malware they install and be able to better protect your money and identity. I wish you healthy and safe computing.
Linda Lindquist – Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org